Foundational Primer on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development

The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development constitutes a paradigm shift. It requires understanding and articulating a narrative around the meaning and value of sustainable development, how the Sustainable Development Goals interrelate across various sectors, and what it will take to achieve them.

The SDG Primer aims to establish a common base of understanding and approach for the UN system in supporting the 2030 Agenda. It is primarily meant to inform – in broad terms – the programmes and actions of all UN entities, including in their engagement with government and civil society partners.

The SDG Primer is available to all development practitioners, including those working in government, civil society, academia, and United Nations organizations.

You’ll find the Primer in three versions:

Primer e-Course initial page screenshotPrimer e-Course menu screenshot

E-course

The e-course covers the full Primer content and is open to all development practitioners.

Visit e-Course page

Full SDG Primer Cover

SDG Primer

The SDG Primer aims to establish a common base of understanding and approach for the UN system in supporting the 2030 Agenda. It is primarily meant to inform, in broad terms, the programmes and actions of all UN entities, including their engagement with government and civil society partners.

Open the full SDG Primer (PDF)

Summary Booklet Cover

Summary Booklet

The summary booklet presents ideas to inspire the work of all parts of governments and societies in the quest for inclusive and sustainable development.

Open the Summary Booklet (PDF)

The Primer resulted from a collaborative effort undertaken under the United Nations Sustainable Development Group that assembled the most relevant thinking and insights around key global and national SDG-related challenges. In particular, the UN System Staff College, UNITAR and the Sustainable Solutions Development Network were key partners, with the UN Development Coordination Office supporting the project.

The call for a Decade of Action for the delivery of the SDGs demands upscaling the ambition and engaging all sectors of society in transformative action.

We trust the SDG Primer will be a vital tool for the achievement of sustainable development.